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Keeping the Faithe While Zeroing In On Success

Student Feature: Faithe Odelia de Souza

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She is a sharpshooter both on and off the range. In January this year, Diploma in Business Year 1 student-athlete Faithe Odelia de Souza won gold in the 10m Air Rifle Women Junior Individual event at the Meyton Cup held in Innsbruck, Austria. She then added another gold medal when she competed in the NTU Invitational Shoot’s 10m Air Rifle Women ‘A’ Individual category in February.

Academically, Faithe scored the award for best in English Language when she was in Secondary 4. In recognition of her ongoing success, Faithe received the Joseph Schooling Sports Grant on 13 May 2023 by Joseph Schooling himself. The award is presented to 14 to 19-year-old athletes who strive for success and demonstrate that they have the dedication to balance their responsibilities in both academic studies and sports training.

We caught up with Faithe to get her thoughts on her achievement.

Q. Congratulations on being awarded the Joseph Schooling Sports Grant. How does it feel to be recognised with the award?

It is an honour to receive this award. The support and encouragement from Mr Joseph Schooling and the selection committee means a lot to me and it will further motivate me to work harder.

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Q. Being a student-athlete is challenging. Share with us your top 3 tips to effectively manage your sports and studies.

Firstly, good time management is something that a student-athlete must have to balance sports and studies. The daily Supervised Self-Study Time (SST) in boarding helped instil in me the need to set aside time every day to revise my schoolwork. This has been our practice since Secondary 1 at the Singapore Sports School, and I will continue to practice this during my diploma studies.

Secondly, having weekly study plans helps a student-athlete to manage the certain topics they need to study or catch up on. My secondary school academic mentor, Ms Koh Yihan, always encouraged us to plan a timetable for what we should do each week. This has helped me focus on what has to be completed and gives me a clear view of what I need to work on for the week. 

Thirdly, having a study group can help student-athletes seek help from their peers to check if they happened to miss anything important during class. My study buddies have helped me to catch up on work that I missed when I was competing overseas.

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Q. How has the through-train programme in Sports School helped you in developing as a better student-athlete?

I appreciate the way the through-train programme is structured as it allows me to juggle my studies with demands of training and overseas competitions. I do not have to fear that I will miss out on too much of my studies when I travel for competitions as my lecturers try their best to help plan the best coursework around my absence.

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Q. In your opinion, what are the top 3 character traits or qualities that a student-athlete must possess in order to succeed in their sport and studies?

The first quality is perseverance. Not every day will be smooth sailing and we have to learn how to accept those bad days because that is part of our learning. We need to learn how to not dwell on the past and focus on the future.

Next, be humble and receptive to advice. We should learn from our seniors and coaches who have walked down similar paths previously. Listen and learn from what they had done.

Lastly, patience. To achieve your goals in a sport you need patience. Many people think sporting success comes instantly but every sportsman goes through years of training before they reach their goal and that requires patience. We also need to be patient with our progress in our sports.

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Q. What are your short- and long-term goals moving forward?

My short-term sports goals will always be improving myself as a shooter and hitting new personal bests. In the long run, I hope to represent Singapore at the Olympics one day.

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